Rockers Wayland, named after the band’s Michigan hometown, formed six years ago. The band is managed by Jude Cole (Lifehouse) and Jesse James Dupree (Jackyl, Full Throttle Saloon). They released a four song EP in December 2011 and have been on the road non-stop since January 2012. Their hit single Welcome To My Head can be heard on radio stations all over the U.S., and it has been a consistent song on Sirius XM Octane’s daily rotation. In a recent interview with vocalist Mitch Arnold, he talked about the band, how he got his start in music and what the band is up to right now.
Arnold grew up in Southern Indiana with a piano in the house, which he was always interested in. He started lessons around the age of seven, but hated practicing. Eventually he quit, but started playing drums and then joined his high school show choir. It was then that he started playing the piano and writing music and he hasn’t looked back since. “The first artist I was moved by was Marc Cohn, specifically the hit song Walking In Memphis,” he said. Other big musical inspirations for him include Queen, Led Zeppelin, The Who and The Beatles.
Wayland currently has one of the top hits on Sirius XM Octane. Welcome To My Head has reached #1 on the satellite station’s countdown. “It’s amazing…incredible…we get pictures with texts all the time from people showing us we are on there. To be announced as the number one song is an honor…to see the birth of that idea and finally see it completed and come full circle…it’s an honor,” Arnold said.
The band is currently on a national tour this fall, “Hang ‘em High Tour,” with Another Lost Year. The tour is being sponsored by Jesse James Dupree’s America’s Outlaw Bourbon Whiskey. “I’m sure there will be a lot more debauchery involved with this tour,” Arnold said. The two bands are good friends, so they are looking forward to spending time with them out on the road.
Wayland also has a full length album in the works which will be released in early 2013. Arnold is inspired by anything and everything when it comes to his songwriting. “The other day, I sat down to write a song about moonshine and I ended up writing a song about a movie…I try really hard to feel my surroundings,” he said. The band is coming into their own more and more with each passing day. Arnold explained, “We have really started to know ourselves as musicians and artists…I’ve never been more proud of what we’ve written. We are more comfortable than ever as musicians.”
Arnold talked about one of his most amazing moments in his career thus far. “We were in the middle of a set and I looked over to see the entire band of Black Stone Cherry watching our show. I bowed to them and they bowed back. I’ve always looked up to them. We ended up exchanging numbers and ended up texting each other…it was two artists sharing respect to each other,” he said.
Wayland has learned many lessons along the way. “I’ve learned that there is no room for rock stars in this business anymore. I hope I carry this humbleness with me always, and I hope I keep getting knocked on my ass every day. We are staying real for our fans and for the people who love our music,” Arnold stated.
There will undoubtedly be many more great things from this band in the future. Be sure to check out their website and find them on Facebook and like their page. The band loves hearing from fans, so send them a note and they will respond. Arnold said, “There are no walls between the fans and the band.”
Wayland is: Mitch Arnold (vocals), Phillip Vilenski (guitar), Dean Pizzaz (bass) and Tyler Coburn (drums)